I have just watched Sharapova perform at another of those 'Sports star owns up to taking banned drugs' press conferences. They are cringeworthy affairs marrying admission, regret, embarrassment and apology designed to garner what little sympathy is left before being hauled up before the regulatory commission to have their fate decided. Perhaps this sort of press statement will set a trend in the real world , something like this -
"I received a letter today, delivered by hand by 13 police officers in riot gear smashing in my front door accompanied by dogs, informing me that I had failed a drugs test. For which I take full responsibility.
I had been buying a homeopathic plant extract from the ice-cream van man after he recommended it to ease my sinus congestion. However I later found out that the free medication that came with my exceedingly expensive "Mr Whippy 99, just say double flake and I’ll know what you mean”, had another name of 'Charlie ', which I thought was a perfume, though the bulk of it was ground up worming tablets.
I have been advised that I will not be allowed to compete in the Australian Open, British Open or French Open (on the grounds that I have never played tennis) and the only Open I will be lucky to attend will be Ford Open Prison, but that will be unlikely due to the amount of medication found in my possession. I have also been advised that the only centre court I'll be seeing will be at the Old Bailey.
I feel betrayed by 'Ice Cream Dan’ and foolish for not noticing that the sinus powder was producing distinctive side effects that could not be put down to just becoming articulate in a gabbled way, interesting, entertaining and slightly less hungry.
I regret everything that I have done and can only apologise to my fans and those who have done everything to get me this far.
As the inflatable boy said to the inflatable headmaster in the inflatable school when he brought in a pin to ‘show and tell’, "I have not only let you down, I have let the whole school down but more importantly, I have let myself down".